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DIE the RPG announces return to Kickstarter for comic’s tabletop adaptation

DIE-ing from anticipation.

The team behind the tabletop adaptation of award-winning comic, DIE, will reboot its crowdfunding campaign on May 17th. An initial Kickstarter project was postponed in October 2021 to avoid running headlong into production and shipping delays.

Grant Howitt of Rowan, Rook and Decard - Spire: The City Must Fall and Heart: The City Beneath creator - announced the impending Kickstarter campaign via Twitter. His UK-based design outfit is helping publish the game alongside Gillen, who developed his own playable prototype concurrent with the comic’s initial run. Dicebreaker previously spoke with Gillen, Howitt and Hans - who returns to illustrate the RPG - about how that first version was ambitious, beautiful and ultimately not fit to print.

“We’ve taken our time with this project to make sure it’s as good as it can be,” Howitt said in a tweet. “We’ve had some of the best writers and editors in the industry take it from Kieron’s initial draft to something really amazing.”

DIE, the comic, was created by Kieron Gillen and illustrated by Stephanie Hans, and it tells the story of a group of friends who were transported - Jumanji style - into a twisted version of their homebrewed tabletop campaign and spent years inside this alternate world. The story takes place decades later as the estranged players, now adults with lives chock full of baggage, return to the world of DIE to finish what they started.

The resulting book will let players create their own screwed-up, horror setting by seeding it with the doubts, insecurities and character flaws of its players, er… player-characters. The lines between person and persona will, appropriately, blend as everyone in the group will create their own ostensibly normal character and the heroic, fantastical version they become once they enter DIE.

Playing the game will mean facing some old tabletop tropes stripped of their nostalgia and deciding whether the “real” world is worth returning to. Things will likely get pretty metatextual in Gillen’s particular brand of dark humour, which makes it a keen match for the tabletop expertise Rowan, Rook and Decard bring to bear.

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